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Author Topic: A few question about theatre/musical/"plays" mixing  (Read 573 times)

Miguel Dahl

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A few question about theatre/musical/"plays" mixing
« on: July 17, 2018, 06:53:22 pm »

I've done two outdoor plays this summer, and I know I can improve, by a lot. I'm not missing cues/in/outs, but this can get much better.

I've done almost everthing else behind a desk, but very little theater/musical/etc.

They aren't massive butdget plays at all, it's been 400 people in the audience, that would probaly say something about the budget.

Anyhow. I've just spent a few hours googling line by line mixing. I've somewhat done this, but I've actually never used DCA's. It's been maximum 16 mics + band and FX etc. So I've had band on one DCA, and just doing the actors' mics on the channels. Fair enough, not that many channels.

I saw some videos on Youtube, there's a LOT of scene changes comparing to what I do. I do close to 0 scene changes. This year I haven't done a single one. All live (ins&outs, reverbs for singing, panning, and simple routing). Last year I did a few because there was sort of very abrupt scene changes, black out, then a new scene.

But: roughly, comparing to an example you also might have. How much time goes into programming, (for a small outdoor play)?
I really wanto to step it up, but how much time (and money) goes into recording the show from the racks pre's from the first tech, playing it back into the console, and program after that, after everybody on stage has packed their stuff and gone home?

Then, the techical questions.

DCA's are safed.
0.5 seconds crossfade time? -ish? on the main inputs?

Is recall focus used a lot? I can picture myself as a base, just using safe on the DCA's, gain and EQ.

Again, pretty simple questions, but these are the ones I have after some hours of "studying". I need to get the book from Shannon "something".


And, how do you plan the DCA assignments? Spreadsheet and look at the logic there, from scene to scene?

For instance. Mic #5 is out halfway through a scene, next scene you have a mic which will come in after a few lines. Do you assign the contributors to a DCA's so a DCA fader which starts down, always had an assignment which ended down in the previous scene? This example is with DCA's in safe.


This last show has been a bit of a PITA to mix. I usually sit down with the director beforehand and go through the script, marking ins and outs. But this time the play has several scenes where there's parallell scenes, so I basically need all 16 faders up, since he wants the "chitchat" in the background, also panned and routed to individual speakers on the playfield. There might be 3 seconds of laughter from the left when there's also a dialogue from the far right, and some chitchat from the center, and then they move around a little bit so the dialogue continues from another side of the stage, so I have to track 16 microphones with panning and levels while also hitting my go-button on certain cues. And once that one chicken, or even horse or cow doesn't do as expected it's impro for a few lines. And when someone in the play goes after to try to capture that chicken while still blurting out their lines but from a different part of the stage since they ran after it, it's a lot of "heads up". It's sort of funny, but you can't program these indidents.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2018, 07:30:46 pm by Miguel Dahl »
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Andrew Hollis

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Re: A few question about theatre/musical/"plays" mixing
« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2018, 09:25:36 pm »

This group has addressed these questions extensively: https://groups.google.com/forum/#!searchin/theatre-sound-list/vca$20mixing%7Csort:date

And this is a good reference: https://www.amazon.com/Mixing-Musical-Broadway-Theatrical-Techniques/dp/0240817591#

In your example at end, mixers are utilizing VCA's precisely so they don't have to chase 16 faders. I'd just start with VCA's and your life will be a lot easier.

Then later implement recall of channel mute and channel VCA assignment at the least.

Johannes Halvorsen

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Re: A few question about theatre/musical/"plays" mixing
« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2018, 11:30:48 am »

Never used this software myself, but I hear a lot of praise for Palladium + Micplot:

https://chsounddesign.com


Sent fra min SM-G955F via Tapatalk

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Jerome Malsack

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Re: A few question about theatre/musical/"plays" mixing
« Reply #3 on: July 19, 2018, 10:09:30 am »

Another thing to look for is Snippets  Something behringer X32 does. 

one of several  youtubes.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l0hQ_gedOZ4
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Kevin Maxwell

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Re: A few question about theatre/musical/"plays" mixing
« Reply #4 on: July 19, 2018, 11:26:11 am »

Miguel, what mixer are you using?
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ProSoundWeb Community

Re: A few question about theatre/musical/"plays" mixing
« Reply #4 on: July 19, 2018, 11:26:11 am »


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